Baseball / Japanese Baseball

Onelki Garcia pitches Dragons past Carp to sweep series

Kyodo

Onelki Garcia allowed two runs over seven innings Sunday as the Chunichi Dragons beat the Hiroshima Carp 3-2 to complete a three-game sweep of the two-time defending Central League champions.

Before a crowd of 35,576 at Nagoya Dome, the Cuban lefty struck out 10, while issuing one walk, hitting a batter and surrendering four hits. Relievers Hiroshi Suzuki and Shinji Tajima each worked one perfect inning to wrap things up, with Tajima earning his fourth save.

“I normally don’t care about how many strikeouts I get, but to get 10 against the Carp, I’m pretty happy about that,” Garcia (3-0) said. “Today I just wanted to focus on each batter in turn, and try to get ahead in counts.”

Chunichi’s Nobumasa Fukuda broke the ice with a two-out, second-inning double after newcomer Steven Moya opened the inning with a single off Carp right-hander Daichi Osera (2-2). Catcher Shota Ono, who joined Chunichi as a free agent over the winter, tripled home Fukuda.

“The Carp swept us at Mazda Stadium (to open the season), so coming in to this series, we badly wanted to win three straight,” Fukuda said. “Now we have to move on to the next game and do our best.”

The Dragons made it 3-0 in the third on Moya’s second hit of the game and an error. With two outs, Moya’s single rolled past left fielder Xavier Batista, allowing speedster Yohei Oshima to score from first.

Batista homered with one out in the fourth to put the Carp on the board. Tomohiro Abe followed with a single and scored on Brad Eldred’s one-out RBI double. Garcia, however, didn’t allow another runner until he issued a one-out walk in the seventh.

Moya, who was promoted to the first team on Friday, went 3-for-4 and the 26-year-old left-handed-hitting first baseman is now batting .692 with two doubles and a home run.

Giants 10, Tigers 1

At Koshien Stadium, Ryoma Nogami (2-1) allowed a run in eight innings and Kazuma Okamoto scored three times and drove in four runs to power Yomiuri, which completed a series sweep of Hanshin.

Swallows 6, BayStars 2

At Jingu Stadium, Tokyo Yakult’s Yoshinori Sato (1-2) allowed one hit and two walks over 6⅔ scoreless innings to earn the win after Wladimir Balentien broke a scoreless tie with a two-run, sixth-inning home run off Joe Wieland (0-1) who was making his season debut for Yokohama.

PACIFIC LEAGUE

Lions 11, Marines 5

At MetLife Dome, Hayato Takagi (1-0) earned his first win since moving from Yomiuri in the offseason as free agent compensation. He allowed two runs over six innings, while Seibu scored nine-plus runs for the fourth straight game to complete a sweep of Chiba Lotte.

Buffaloes 8, Eagles 0

At Rakuten Seimei Park Miyagi, Taisuke Yamaoka (2-2) allowed four hits and a walk over seven innings and two Orix relievers completed a five-hit shutout of last-place Tohoku Rakuten.

Fighters 11, Hawks 2

At Sapporo Dome, Sho Nakata drove in five runs and lefty Takayuki Kato (1-2) allowed two runs over six innings as Hokkaido Nippon Ham beat Fukuoka SoftBank.